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February 2017
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April 2017

I believe education starts from birth and that a supportive home environment is key! I'm talking health and lifestyle, not just teaching our kids how to read and write. I want to set a good example, be a role model and also involve my children in the decision making in our home. There is no doubt that obesity and inactivity are huge concerns in our society. Too many children don't know what is in their food, are unable to make informed and educated decisions or are unable to regulate their food intake. Parents have to take the lead and I'm... Read more →

There are times throughout the year that can cause tension in families regarding children's toys and gifts. Parents often want their children to be exposed to ethical, wooden, Montessori type gifts but are really hesitant or unsure how to talk to friends and family about it. Some parents just want to avoid the excess or overwhelm that can come at gift giving time. My eldest is nine so this is an issue we have managed with a lot of success and now our friends and family really give the best, most appropriate gifts! Discussion and a little education of friends... Read more →

Otis' birthday party is this weekend. He hasn't had a large birthday party for a couple of years. Otis is beyond excited. We like to keep our parties simple but fun, focusing on what the kids will enjoy the most. Here are a few of our ideas for Otis' wildlife themed party! Entertainment: Wildlife Experience. An opportunity to see wildlife up close and find out more about some native animals. We are using Geckoes Wildlife, their presentation lasts for around an hour, the children can touch some of the animals and ask lots of questions. They bring a wide range... Read more →

First, I want to say that I am personally in favour of a mattress on the floor, no frame, no extras. I would choose a thin but firm mattress. We used a mattress on carpet floors in Victoria and the ACT (Australia) for many years with no concerns about mold. We vacuumed under the bed weekly but didn't do any specific airing. I know that this will change with locations and it might not be for you. We've also had really good heating so the cold hasn't been a concern. In some ways having the soft edge of the mattress... Read more →

I've written previously that my children see a Speech Pathologist weekly. Caspar has seen a Speech Pathologist since he was three and Otis since he was four. The children's speech is an ongoing concern for us and there is no easy fix. It is something that I believe is really important. Children need to be able to communicate and to express themselves! Unfortunately, many parents are unsure about their children's speech and fail to get the help and support their children need, it often causes worry, stress and delayed language skills. Today I have asked our Speech Pathologist, Monique Speakman... Read more →

Do you follow any Montessori accounts on Instagram? It's a lovely way to gain ideas and inspiration. Here are a few Montessori accounts that I am currently enjoying! Golden Busina (Golden Bead) Montessori School in St Petersburg, Russia. Lots of gorgeous classroom pictures and videos. Ninis Montessori - A Montessori family from Barcelona! Anne (from Nininoes) has just started re-posting on this account and I hope she keeps it up! Pamela Green from Ananda Montessori. Lots of really lovely infant and toddler environments and activities. There is lots of inspiration here for those setting up an infant space!! Bluebird Montessori... Read more →

Etsy is one of the best places to find Montessori infant materials. The materials are handmade often by those who have studied Montessori. I've found some really beautiful Montessori rattles, some of these have been designed specifically for Montessori environments while other are just really lovely rattles made from natural materials. 1. Bell Rattle (sold in a newborn pack) at Beginning Montessori. Small and light enough for a young child to grasp, recommended as a first rattle. 2. Cube Rattle at Wooden Caterpillar. 3. Bell Cylinder at Beginning Montessori. 4. Wooden Baby Rattle at Essential Montessori. 5. Black and White... Read more →

Since I last wrote about the Health Star Rating system, we have been looking very closely at the packaged products we buy. It's been fun as the boys race each other to see who can find the product with the highest number of stars. In the last couple of weeks, it's become automatic for us to look for the Health Star Rating on all of our packaged foods! I've also had the opportunity to talk to Caspar (9 yrs) and Otis (5 yrs) and explain to them how the Health Star Rating system works and why we are looking for... Read more →

About Dogs / Animals Under Our Feet / About the Ocean / About Bugs / Endangered Animals Do you have a learner reader at home? Otis is still learning to read. He will read independently at school but at home, he is sometimes hesitant and on most occasions, he will ask for me to read to him. Elaine recently recommended this series of books and I ordered them immediately, they have been fantastic! I hadn't seen any books from this series before and never would have found them on my own so a huge thank you to Elaine for looking... Read more →

Yesterday I had the privilege of visiting the Montessori Early Learning Activities (MELA) playgroup based at The Gap in Brisbane (Australia). The group facilitator Amanda is a British trained Montessori educator. I always love to meet Montessori parents and educators and it was such a delight to meet Amanda. She has a real honest and down to earth approach to Montessori which is needed in her work. Amanda runs the MELA playgroup and an eight-week Practical Montessori at Home Beginner Course for Mums and Bubs. She spends a lot of her time communicating with parents and has a lot of... Read more →

Image: Totally Montessori We have some exciting news to share. We are expecting a new addition to our family. The boys are beyond excited to have a new sibling due later in the year. I experienced a missed miscarriage late last year so I've had difficulty sharing this pregnancy. I am still really hesitant to talk about it, however, I am sure we will have some infant Montessori content appear as time passes and we begin to prepare our home and family. Here are a few articles I've been enjoying this week. Kate's Montessori Nursery (pictured above) at Totally Montessori.... Read more →

Otis has a wood working box which contains lots of wood off cuts, nails, wood glue and his hammer. He will often make his own creations with a couple of pieces of wood. It is a creative process and he's learning lots of great skills! We were recently introduced to Buildme Wooden Toys and I instantly loved the concept. I knew both my boys would love it too! Buildme Wooden Toys are perfect for children who love to build, who love woodwork and love to use a screwdriver and hammer! In the box you receive all the pieces you need... Read more →

Children between the ages of two and four years old are in the sensitive period for order. They often respond well to routine, consistency, and repetition. They also respond well to order in their environment. Where there is a place for everything, and everything is in its place. Where they can find what they are looking for and easily return things to where they belong. I have found toddlers to be very responsive to putting things away and cleaning up - but how do you turn that into a life long habit? Include pack up and clean up as part... Read more →

Today I'm taking a look at the Melissa and Doug, See and Spell Puzzle. I have seen this puzzle in many Montessori environments. While I am a traditionalist regarding materials at school, in the home I take a different approach. I personally think this puzzle is perfect for the Montessori home! For a younger child, you could present one board with just the letters that match. This would make a really simple first step. Then you could present one board with a mixture of letters so the child has to sort through them. Then you could present two boards and... Read more →

Some things I am loving on Etsy - 4 Montessori Dowel Toys - Toddler Stacking Set, I love the handmade feel to these traditional Montessori stacking toys and these High Contrast Cards Set of 12 perfect for a newborn. Did I mention that last month my sister had her second baby? I became an Aunty for the second time and the boys have a new cousin to adore! Next week Otis starts his transition to the Cycle Two (6-9yrs) Classroom! Can you believe it? He isn't six yet but the children have a good transition period to help them settle... Read more →